In a new report, Buyer Beware: Toxic BPA & Regrettable Substitutes in the Linings of Canned Food, produced as a collaborative effort by the Breast Cancer Fund and others, researchers found that many canned food manufacturers are not making good on their promises to discontinue use of Bisphenol A (BPA).
BPA is a toxic, endocrine-disrupting chemical that negatively impacts our hormonal systems, contributing to a host of harmful health effects. Hundreds of scientific studies have linked extremely small amounts of BPA to an increased risk of several types of cancers as well as conditions such as asthma, type-2 diabetes, and attention deficit disorder. (In a separate study, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 90 percent of Americans have traces of the synthetic compound in their system at any given time.)
Here are some of the key findings:
• In the samples we tested, 100% of Campbell’s cans (15 out of 15) contained BPA-based epoxy, even though the company claims to be making significant progress in its transition away from BPA.
• 71% of sampled Del Monte cans (10 out of 14) tested positive for BPA-based epoxy resins.
• 50% of sampled General Mills cans (6 out of 12, including Progresso and Green Giant) tested positive for BPA.
• Although fewer cans were tested for these large companies, all 3 cans from McCormick & Company (Thai Kitchen) and all 3 cans from Nestlé (Nestlé Carnation) contained BPA-based epoxy.
• All of the cans sampled from 5 smaller brands also tested positive for BPA-based epoxy: Empire Company Limited (3 out of 3); Goya Foods (2 out of 2); Ocean Spray Cranberries (2 out of 2); Thai Agri Foods (2 out of 2); and Vilore Foods (2 out of 2).
• But not all the news is bad:
• Amy’s Kitchen, Annie’s Homegrown (recently acquired by General Mills), Hain Celestial Group and ConAgra have fully transitioned away from the use of BPA and have disclosed the BPA alternatives they’re using. No BPA-based epoxy resins were detected in any of the cans tested from these brands.
• Eden Foods reported eliminating the use of BPA-based epoxy liners in 95% of its canned foods and stated that it is actively looking for alternatives. No BPA epoxy was detected in the Eden canned foods that were tested.
To read the whole report, visit toxicfoodcans.org.